FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
|CONTACT:||Buel C. Young||MVA Media Relations|
LUCK O' THE IRISH IS ALIVE AND WELL AT MARYLAND MVA
Agency reminds citizens that apostrophes are now allowed on licenses and ID cards
(GLEN BURNIE, MD) March 13, 2013 – The Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA) wants to remind the O'Connors, O'Briens, O'Neills and all other Marylanders proud of their Irish descent that your apostrophes are important to us as well... O'yea! After many decades of not allowing apostrophes or hyphens on MVA-issued driver licenses or identification cards due to computer compatibility issues, MVA modified their computer systems in 2010 to allow customers to have their names corrected and spelled with an apostrophe or hyphen.
"We are pleased that technology has caught up with the times and can allow us to make this simple, yet important, change for our customers," said MVA Administrator John Kuo. "When we heard that many of our customers were not aware that we can make this correction, we wanted to get the word out just in time for St. Patrick's Day."
The long-standing practice of not printing apostrophes on a driver's license or identification card had been in place since the driver license process became computerized back in the late 1970s. Because MVA computers had to interface with external computer systems, apostrophes and hyphenated names created verification issues with other computer systems across the country. In mid-2010, MVA began allowing the apostrophes when computers became more sophisticated and allowed the use of non-letters.
For customers who wish to have their names corrected and spelled with an apostrophe or hyphen at the time of their next renewal, MVA will make the correction with the proper documentation, such as a birth certificate, Social Security Card or valid passport.
While we can't promise you a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, the MVA can promise you a driver's license that will proudly display your Irish Heritage. Erin Go Bragh!